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KARLOVY VARY 2023 KVIFF Eastern Promises

KVIFF Eastern Promises reveals its latest crop of promising film projects


- Karlovy Vary’s renowned industry platform will welcome 27 projects hailing from countries across Central and Eastern Europe as well as the Middle East

KVIFF Eastern Promises reveals its latest crop of promising film projects
The Other One by Marie-Magdalena Kochová, which is taking part in Works in Progress

KVIFF Eastern Promises (3-4 July), the industry platform of the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival (30 June-8 July), presents emerging talent from Central and Eastern Europe, as well as the Middle East, to an assemblage of industry individuals, encompassing distributors, sales agents, producers and festival programmers, and the numbers reach over 1,300 attendees annually. The platform places an emphasis on these regions, fostering a space for industry professionals from Europe and America to encounter new projects at different stages of development and production through a series of workshops, panels, presentations and networking opportunities, thus serving as a reliable resource for both regional and international distributors and sales representatives on a mission to seek out novel films.

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The KVIFF Eastern Promises industry platform is set to present 27 curated film projects across various sessions: Works in Progress, Works in Development – Feature Launch and First Cut+ Works in Progress. After careful evaluation by international juries, the platform will allocate awards, totalling to €115,000 in value. Amr Gamal’s film The Burdened, which won the Works in Progress Post-Production Development Award last year (see the news), premiered at this year’s Berlinale, in the Panorama section, while Veronika Lišková’s documentary The Visitors [+see also:
film review
film profile
premiered at the Locarno Film Festival and Albert Hospodářský’s debut, Brutal Heat [+see also:
film review
interview: Albert Hospodářský
film profile
, is all set to premiere at the upcoming edition of the KVIFF (see the news). All three projects were presented as part of the Eastern Promises Works in Progress last year (see the news).

This year’s Works in Progress selection includes a project by Aristotelis Maragkos, Beachcomber, which revolves around Elias, who mesmerises his community with tales of his father's sailing adventures, even embarking on a ship-building endeavour while dealing with his mother's dementia and a burgeoning crew of misfits; and Assel Aushakimova’s Bikechess, which sees the protagonist, a Kazakh journalist, navigating absurd state-praising stories, a clandestine relationship with her cameraman, and caring for her rebellious lesbian activist sister. Among the domestic projects is Klára Tasovská’s solo documentary I’m Not Everything I Want to Be, which captures the path of photographer Libuše Jarcovjáková as she ventures towards personal freedom through thousands of self-reflective photographs; and The Other One by Marie-Magdalena Kochová, who explores the challenges faced by a teenager longing to leave her small Czech town, while grappling with her responsibilities towards her autistic sister.

Works in Development – Feature Launch will welcome a project from Anna Gyimesi, the psychological drama Soft Hours, about a mother coping with the loss of her son, who has been missing for ten years; Ýr Thrastardottir’s psychological horror Shadow Play, following a young woman consumed by anguish after her newborn child disappears; and Selini Papageorgiou’s lockdown-set coming-of-age romance Paperplanes. First Cut+ once again rounds up projects in post-production, and the latest selection includes Zdeněk Jiráský’s coming-of-age drama I Don’t Love You Anymore, about two Czech runaway kids who end up in Bucharest; Laura Hermanides’ euthanasia drama The White Flash, which sees two parents confronted by their son’s decision to end his life; and Sonja Prosenc’s third feature, Redemption (see the news).

The full list of projects set to be presented is as follows:

Works in Progress

Distances [+see also:
film review
film profile
- Matej Bobrik (Poland)
Producer: Agnieszka Skalska (Koi Studio)

The Fifth Resurrection of Farid - Khalid A Youssef (Egypt)
Producer: Yasmin Desouki 

The Other One - Marie-Magdalena Kochová (Czech Republic/Slovak Republic) 
Producers: Barbora Drtílková, Vít Poláček (m3 films)

Yalla, Baba! - Angie Obeid (Lebanon/Belgium/Netherlands)
Producer: Bart Van Langendonck (Savage Film)

Beachcomber (working title) - Aristotelis Maragkos (Greece)
Producer: Konstantinos Koukoulis (Plankton)
Co-producer: Myrto Stathi (Byrd)

Gulizar - Belkıs Bayrak (Turkey/Kosovo)
Producers: Mehmet Bahadır Er (Protim VP), Valmira Hyseni (Plan Bee Films), Belkıs Bayrak 

Tasty - Egle Vertelyte (Lithuania)
Producer: Lukas Trimonis (iN SCRiPT)

Mother Mara - Mirjana Karanovic (Serbia/Switzerland/Luxembourg) 
Producer: Snezana van Hauvelingen (This and That Productions)

I’m Not Everything I Want To Be - Klára Tasovská (Czech Republic/Slovak Republic/Austria)
Producers: Klára Tasovská (Somatic Films), Lukáš Kokeš (nutprodukcia), Mischief Films

The Editorial Office (working title) - Roman Bondarchuk (Ukraine/Germany/Czech Republic/Slovakia)
Producer: Darya Bassel (Moon Man)

Bikechess - Assel Aushakimova (Kazakhstan/France/Norway)
Producers: Antoine Simkine (Les Films d’Antoine), Almagul Tleukhanova (Alma Pictures), Christian Fredrik Martin (Maipo Film)

Works in Development – Feature Launch

The Boy Who Saw in the Dark - Pauls Kesteris (Latvia) 
Scriptwriter: Rasa Bugavičute-Pēce
Producer: Kristians Alhimionoks (Centaur Films)

Excavators - Argyro Nicolaou (Cyprus)
Scriptwriter: Argyro Nicolaou
Producer: Constantinos Nikiforou (Caretta Films)

Flight from Kabul - Sahraa Karimi (Slovakia) 
Scriptwriter: Sahraa Karimi
Producer: Wanda Adamík Hrycová (Wandal Production)

God Break Down the Door - Vojtěch Novotný (Czech Republic) 
Scriptwriter: Vojtěch Novotný
Producer: Tomáš Pertold (Perfilm)

Paperplanes - Selini Papageorgiou (Greece) 
Scriptwriter: Selini Papageorgiou
Producers: Iro Aidoni, Mina Dreki (Marni Films)

The Portuguese House - Avelina Prat (Spain/Portugal) 
Scriptwriter: Avelina Prat
Producer: Gerard Marginedas (O Som e a Fúria)

Shadow Play - Yr Thrastardottir (Belgium/Iceland) 
Scriptwriters: Kristian Van der Heyden, Pauline Baert
Producers: Duo Productions, Kristian Van der Heyden (Harald House Belgium)

Soft Hours - Anna Gyimesi (Hungary)
Scriptwriter: Anna Gyimesi
Producer: Genovéva Petrovits (Kino Alfa)

First Cut+

Allen Sunshine - Harley Chamandy (Canada/USA)
Producers: Chantal Chamandy, Laurent Allaire

Era - Parta Kelmendi (Kosovo/North Macedonia)
Producers: Aferdita Saracini Kelmendi, Marija Dimitrova

Family Therapy - Sonja Prosenc (Slovenia/Italy/Croatia/Norway/Serbia)
Producer: Rok Sečen

The Garden of Earthly Delights - Morgan Knibbe (Netherlands/Philippines/Belgium)
Producers: Frank Hoeve, Armi Rae Cacanindin 

I Do Not Love You Anymore [+see also:
film review
film profile
- Zdeněk Jiráský (Czech Republic/Slovakia/Romania)
Producer: Jordi Niubó

Pasárgada - Dira Paes (Brazil)
Producers: Eliane Ferreira, Dira Paes, Pablo Baião

Raw Material! - Martin Boross (Hungary)
Producers: Gábor Osváth, Dániel Mayer

The Woman Who Cries - George Walker Torres (Brazil/Venezuela)
Producer: Antonio Gonçalves Junior

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